How to Create Powerful Experiences for Your Audience – Part IV: Be Credible

Alicia Willard

Blog four of an eight-part series on the tenets of a powerful user or audience experience

For other posts in the series, visit:
  1. Useful
  2. Usable
  3. Findable

So far in this series, I shared insights about the first, second, and third tenets of creating powerful experiences: useful, usable, and findable. In this post, I want to discuss the fourth tenet: credible.
Credible is defined as being believable; worthy of belief or confidence; trustworthy.
As you might guess, credibility is critical to a powerful user or audience experience. Going back to the metaphor about public transportation, you started your experience with a public transportation system by thinking about its usefulness. You found the bus or metro useful because it gets you from point A to point B and it gets you there fast. You also determined the metro or bus was usable because you were able to easily purchase a ticket or card online and add money to it for fare. Next, you decided it was findable because you could easily navigate the routes and stops.
Now that you know your metro or bus option is useful, usable, and findable, you’ll begin to ask yourself questions about credibility, even if those questions come to you subconsciously.

  • “Do I trust the drivers or technology powering the system?”
  • “Have there been any recent accidents or major delays?”
  • “Am I safe from the moment I get on the train to when I get off?”

In short, being credible is about whether the public transportation system, website, one-pager, platform, etc. – and the content or information within – is trustworthy. Does the user or audience feel safe or secure using or retaining a product, message, information, or brand?
The message or information you are trying to share with your users or audiences might be useful, it might be usable, and it might even be findable. However, if that user or audience doesn’t trust the information they are receiving, the other aspects of a powerful experience do not matter because they won’t stick around.
To design a powerful experience for users and audiences, you must be credible. Otherwise they will be out the door faster than you can prove yourself otherwise, and instead find someone else who they already trust. Long-term trust without disappointment in a brand leads to loyalty and loyalty leads to returning and engaged users.
Credibility and loyalty are not established overnight. It takes time, content, products, etc. that meet many of the tenets of a powerful experience. However, if your users and audiences cannot trust your website, service, or product, then engagement with them is over before it begins. You must be credible, and it’s worth the work to get there.
To enhance your credibility with users and audiences, or any other experience design needs, contact .

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